Welsh Arts website expands to showcase creative grassroots activities
The website and app for showcasing the arts in Wales, AM has announced a new section to its operation to promote and celebrate co-operative and community activity.
In what it is calling one of the most noteworthy developments of its short history, AM will launch ‘Communities’ which will contain a wide new range of channels and content using digital resources to boost the growth of grassroots community activity.
Launched in March 2020, AM was created as Wales’ first cultural digital platform that would, using website and app, be a vehicle for sharing and discovering Welsh creativity from drama to literature to music to film and more.
Inspired by the ways artistic communities have adapted to the challenges of the Covid pandemic, AM says that the dedicated section of its site will provide opportunities to promote activity and to connect communities using a digital, accessible medium to inspire and encourage further participation.
The ‘Communities’ section will platform a wide range of content from economic co-operatives, community hubs, performance companies and energy and environmental ventures.
Enterprises already involved include Cwmni Bro Ffestiniog, Antur Waunfawr, Together for Change Pembrokeshire and Partneriaeth Ogwen.
Meanwhile hubs such as Yr Orsaf and Canolfan Soar as well as co-operative pubs such as Saith Seren in Wrexham and Tafarn y Fic in Llithfaen will also feature on the site.
The section will also feature local performance work by Theatr Gydweithredol Troed y Rhiw and energy and environmental ventures such as GwyrddNi and Community Energy Wales.
Alun Llwyd, Chief Executive of AM said: “We believe that a community culture created and owned by the community itself is necessary to the wellbeing of everyone and everything.”
Meleri Davies from Partneriaeth Ogwen said: “Community ventures make a huge difference to the lives of people across Wales. From environmental action to developing the local economy, our influence is substantial but very little attention is given to this in the national press.
“It’s wonderful, then, to see AM allocate a specific section for communities on their website. It serves as documentation of our work but also as recognition of our work’s importance and the importance of community to the lives of people in Wales.”
Lowri Jones from Theatr Gydweithredol Troed y Rhiw, Ceredigion said: “It’s an important time for our neighbourhoods as we try to restart our cultural activity. We look forward to working with AM to use theatre and digital stages to spread the creative output of the West’s local areas”.
Lisbeth McLean from Canolfan & Theatr Soar, Merthyr Tydfil says “One of the most important lessons we’ve learned here in Canolfan Soar over this period is the importance of people being able to meet and socialise to the community.
“There’s a feeling of new appreciation and love in the building since we’ve opened our doors again. The service we provide to our community is at the root of its progression.
“It’s an excellent opportunity to share information and experience and to foster new partnerships”
AM has recently announced a collaboration to platform Deaf and disabled artist, teaming up with Disability Arts Wales and has launched DEWIS, a feature that sees a notable individual choose their favourite pieces of content on AM every month, as well as hosting drama podcasts such as Tremolo by Lisa Parry produced by Illumine Theatre and launched on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, AM and on Theatr Genedlaethol’s education resource ‘Casgliad Dysgu’.
For several days from 13 April onwards the Communities section will take over AM’s homepage with a range of new content and channels. Any organizations or groups with an interest in having a presence in this section should contact AM.
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